How To Become Solicitor General in India

How To Become Solicitor General in India

In India, the Solicitor General is the subordinate of the Attorney General, and serves as the chief legal advisor and primary lawyer for the Indian government. He is appointed for a period of 3 years, and the current Solicitor General of India is Mr. Ranjit Kumar, who took office in June 2014. He advises the government of India and appears on behalf of the Union of India. His post is statutory, and is assisted by a number of Additional Solicitor Generals. If you also want to pursue this honorary post, this article will tell you how to become solicitor general in India.

Who appoints Solicitor General in India?

Unlike the Attorney General, who is appointed by the Indian President himself, the Solicitor General is appointed by an Appointments Committee of the Cabinet. He is selected to assist the Attorney General in addition to four other Additional Solicitor Generals. The proposal for his appointment is usually moved at the Law Secretary of Joint Secretary levels in the Legal Affairs Department. Once the Minister of Law and Justice approves him, his proposal is then sent for approval to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet.

Eligibility criteria for Solicitor General

The eligibility conditions to become a Solicitor General in India are similar to the conditions that a prospective Supreme Court Judge needs to fulfill. Apart from being an Indian citizen, he should at least 5 years of experience as a Judge in High Court or at least two other such courts. He should have been a High Court advocate for a minimum 10 years, and should be a renowned jurist in the eyes of the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet.

Duties of a Solicitor General

The Solicitor General is responsible for the following:

  • He assists and supports the Attorney General of India
  • He serves as the 2nd highest officer of law in India, just after Attorney General
  • He works in coordination with four Additional Solicitors General
  • He appears in the High Courts or the Supreme Court on behalf of the Indian government in cases like appeals, writ petitions, suits and other legal proceedings, where Indian government is presented as a party
  • He advises the Indian government upon legal matters, and performs his legal type of duties as and when assigned to him by the Indian government
  • He represents the Indian government in any references made to the Supreme Court by the President.

Earnings of a Solicitor General

The fees and payment of a Solicitor General depends on the type of job he performs. There are different allowances for different types of jobs. For instance:

  • 16,000 IRs per day per case for writ petitions, references, appeals and suits.
  • 10,000 IRs per day per case for applications like special leave petitions.
  • 5,000 IRs per plead for settling pleadings.
  • 6,000 IRs per case for settling statement.
  • 10,000 IRs per case for giving opinions in case statement.
  • 10,000 IRs per case for written submissions in High Court, Supreme Court, etc.
  • 40,000 IRs per day per case for appearing in outside Delhi Courts.
  • 40,000 IRs per month as a retainer fee.

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What a Solicitor General should not do

Because a Solicitor General works on behalf of the Indian government, he has to follow some restrictions put on his private practice. He should not hold briefs for any parties except for the Indian government. He should not advise anyone against the Indian government, and should not defend any accused criminal.

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